There’s no news for fans of the long-running Stargate television series yet, but production studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer has just taken a big step forward. The studio, which emerged from bankruptcy at the end of 2010 (story), has just completed a deal to secure $500 million in new financing.
Some of the money will be used to pay off the studio’s remaining debts, but most will go toward the production of new film and television projects. MGM is already in production on a number of high-profile projects co-produced with other studios, including The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There and Back Again (with Warner Bros.) and G.I. Joe: Retaliation (with Paramount Pictures).
Production on the next James Bond movie, Skyfall, is also underway, as are remakes of RoboCop, Carrie, and Poltergeist.
Co-CEOs Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum managed to pay off a $325 million term loan in just one year, rather than the five years planned for. The pair told Deadline they plan to grow the studio from this point forward, and the new line of bank credit gives them the cash to do so.
“Not only have we paid off the debt but we have a significant amount of cash on the balance sheet and we now have a full untapped revolving credit facility,” the CEOs said. “The company is now completely unlevered with the ability to explore any opportunities. We have the currency to acquire assets to grow MGM. When we came into the company there were not a lot of project in developments. We started from scratch, and now we have a very interesting slate of pictures. Obviously Bond and The Hobbit led us into this new era. Now that we’ve got more buying power, people may come to us first so we won’t be left at the bottom of the barrel.”